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Netflix Shares Fall on Weak Subscriber Growth: What Wall Street's Saying

20 April 2017, 10:09 | Jan Cross

Netflix Shares Fall on Weak Subscriber Growth: What Wall Street's Saying

Netflix Inc

Netflix has expanded around the world over the last few years, betting that its USA formula would pay off in other countries.

Netflix shares fluctuated in after-market trades that followed release of the quarterly earnings figures, remaining near the closing price of $147.25, which showed a gain for the day.

This post-earnings reaction led NFLX stock to break out of an 18-month consolidation period, marked with the two black parallels. As a result, Netflix is looking at a potential record-setting high with regards to its stocks today. They had risen 15 per cent this year through April 13. In addition, the company added 1.42 million streaming subscribers domestically, and added 3.53 million in the rest of the world. "There's nothing here that changes the thesis", said Anthony DiClemente, an Instinet LLC analyst who recommends buying the shares.

As it is, Netflix expects to spend about $6 billion on programming this year. It now stands on 98.75m subscribers (including 94.36m paying customers) and expects to add another 600,000 in the U.S., and 2.6m elsewhere, in Q2. Our forward guidance shows that we intend to continue to invest internationally, projecting a small loss for Q2.

The heavy second-quarter schedule comes with costs and highlights a dilemma. Wall Street had expected 37 cents per share.

CNBC picked up on a major theme of analyst notes in the wake of the company's earnings release.

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Q1 worldwide subscriber growth (net additions): 3.53 million, versus Wall Street forecasts 3.9 million, and Netflix guidance of 3.7 million. Analysts predict Netflix will make $482 million on revenue of more than $11 billion for the entire year.

Almost 10 years after Netflix began offering online streaming of movies and TV shows, the company says it's all set to hit the 100-million subscribers mark. On the top line, sales of $2.64 billion were right on par with estimates.

The company wants to be assessed in the future based on sales and margins, as opposed to subscriber growth.

Netflix started making its own shows in 2013, with House of Cards one of its first big hits and Stranger Things more recently.

On the downside, Netflix missed subscriber growth targets and forecast running a negative free cash flow for "many years".



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